Monday, June 8, 2009

The Flat Screened Elephant In The Room

Mid-summer last year, I was innocently shopping with my oldest son, when he stops me short in the middle of the aisle in my local discount superwarehouse. He had spotted several HDTVs being put on clearance as former display models. Since he is our resident expert in all things digital, technical, loud and visual; I had asked him to be on the lookout for a 27-32" tv (or so) since ours was over 20 years old and dying. That was about what would fit in our current tv cabinet. We didn't watch that much television, but the thought of being without completely brought stress frowns from the whole family (except DH who watches NO tv{I know! Freaky, eh?}. Me, I need to destress my brain every once in a while with some Food Network or HGTV or my late, beloved Pushing Daisies).

After much discussion on the cell phone with DH while he checks reviews on consumer websites and my son's wild gestures as people begin to snap these televisions up, I finally decided on a model that was much larger than I had planned on, paid the piper and toted it home.

Once home though, the men in the family wanted to flip our dining room and living room, thus creating a manly, dark entertainment Man Cave to better showcase the television. Plus, our living room was all windows which worried DH that robbers would see us watching Barefoot Contessa, get greedy and make off with our new toy some night when we're out. After initial resistance on my part, I relented and my son helped me flip the rooms.

Two ginormous sofas crowd the space. I had petitioned for a love seat or two chairs when we got our sofas, but DH felt the more butt-space, the better. Well, we have plenty of butt space, but not much room to scoot your bootie around the furniture. I also had to jettison my round coffee table since it was way too big for the room and made the traffic flow even more miserable. Fortunately, the coffee table had been a $5 buy from Goodwill which we painted and when I dropped it off to donate it back, I picked up a $3 rectangular coffee table with good lines which we then painted.

But, still, we live in an old house. Most of our household furniture and decor reflects a vintage style. Suddenly we had this bohemoth television glaring at us like Mork if he had landed at Laura Ingall's house. Sure, we loved feeling like we were in our own little movie theater, but it looked weirdly disjointed.

The question was how to tie the television in with the rest of the house. Instead of disguising it behind closed doors or turning our living room ultra modern, I tried to strike a balance that would pull together in a cohesive, pleasing layout.

I'm liking it so far. Not sure I'm finished, but the living room seems more settled and finished for now.
I picked up some prints at Chartreuse and Co. for $1.00 each that had at some point been publicity posters for a theater in the '60s. We also had an old frame lying about and another larger one from we'd picked up from Goodwill. I get mercilessly teased about painting everything white, but since I was trying to meld a super modern tv and a super old house, I went with glossy black and metallic silver paint for the frames. The paint updated them; one old, the other newer, but plain. I had picked up an oval mirror at Target several months back and had hoped to work it into the plan. Whaddya know, it worked!
I order the bejeweled chandelier and frame wall decals from House of Three. These are super easy to work with and a great bargain compared to similar wall decals from various suppliers & companies.
The cabinet the television sits upon was originally our dining room sideboard. It's been pressed into service for the cable box, game systems (yes, plural) and dusty fitness equipment. In an ideal world, it would be painted, but we haven't gotten there yet. Baby steps.

The grand total for the wall decorations was less than $50, but the visual impact really helps the television to blend into our vintage decor as well as keeping the vintage style of our home from being too precious.
This little composition notebook was done for a challenge at Opus Gluei which was at least 2 weeks ago. I've been swallowed up by graduation activities and company, so I'm running behind. The challenge was to work with colors that put you off or what you wouldn't ordinarily work with. I like purple okay, but it's nowhere in my house or clothes or art. Maybe it's the years of being forced to wear purple & gold for school colors. The purple paper from Basic Grey's Lucky line is a bit masculine when paired with the rest of the Lucky line, but I tried to girl it up with scallops, silver leafing, sparkly stuff (who can resist shiny?). The "B" monogram stands for a certain graduate. Not my own, but a friend of the family. I'll give it to her this weekend at a grad party. If I don't decide I like the purple-yellow combo so much that I keep it to my greedy little self!


Heidi said...

I bought those same wall decals but I confess mine are still in the box! I love seeing what you did with them. Love the big black frame with the chandelier in the middle and then oval mirror with the oval frame (and cool how you can see the real chandy reflected in it!). Looks great!

tina said...

How stinkin' cool, Casii! Great effect! I would LOVE to paint our armoire some different shade, but dh isn't having it. Maybe I can convince him we need one of your fancy flat screens & con him into another type of entertainment doohickey. Hmmmm... BTW, have you watched some Bella & Edward on your new screen ;D Thanks for understanding my Twilight fixation. I feel all better. :)

Kris said...

Love what you did with the decals and the t.v. doesn't look bad at all. Mine stays tuned to both hgtv and foodnetwork, depending on my mood.


Kim said...

I love it! Wish I had that kind of vision.

TJ said...

Great job using what you had, or could buy cheap! When I won our big Sony Wega we had to find something to set it on. We took 2 old end tables and a sheet of plywood and created our tv stand.

Jana said...

Love the way your TV center looks. Very cool grouping. I have NO decorating ability. I am in awe of yours. Love the altered notebook you made. "B" will love it, should it make it into her hands.

jennifer said...

Oh man Casii. That looks so awesome! You really have a gift for decorating. I have a large space over out back door that needs something. Suddenly I am seeing frames.

Bliss said...

You make me laff so much. I don't watch t.v. either! Nothing on!
I like how you did those frames and the chandelier one is really neat.

Back Through Time said...

You are one busy girl!! I love all of your projects. You always do such a fab job:-)

Anonymous said...

I think you could hang the tv on the wall and put an actual frame around it. That's what I'm planning on doing to mine when we buy a new one. It's going over our fireplace with an ornate frame around it. I think it'll look good

Anonymous said...

I think you could hang the tv on the wall and put an actual frame around it. That's what I'm planning on doing to mine when we buy a new one. It's going over our fireplace with an ornate frame around it. I think it'll look good